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scottedelman

Originally published at Scott Edelman. Please leave any comments there.

My dreams have been sparse the past few months—not the having of them, but the remembering of them—which meant that January and February were light compared to what I usually can save from my subconscious. But I still like gathering together what I’d previously shared on Twitter to see whether any theme arises.

So far this year, I’ve dreamt of Josh Holloway, David Letterman, David Hyde Pierce, Ian McKellen and more …

February 2016

I dreamt that while I was on a panel at @Readercon, in came my wife with a Colt .45, which she said she’d just used to kill a mouse. Feb 29

I dreamt I visited @dreamoforgonon, and when we laughed until we cried, he pulled out a box of tiny kittens with which we dabbed our tears. Feb 29

I dreamt I leapt up with two friends (don’t remember who) and spontaneously danced that famous Bande à part scene. https://youtu.be/u1MKUJN7vUk Feb 28

I dreamt I was in the Old West, chatting with a bad guy, and realized I forgotten to wear my pistol. And wondered how I’d get out of this. vFeb 26

I dreamt I drove to @StokerCon2016, and once I got there, I found I’d forgotten my luggage, and had only the clothes on my back. Oh, well! Feb 21

I dreamt I looked outside to see ducks nesting with their baby ducks. In a lake. Which we don’t have IRL. A fact which didn’t disturb me. Feb 8

I dreamt I was teaching a fiction writing course, leading an exercise which involved imagining the lives of characters in classic paintings. Feb 7

I dreamt that I visited DC Comics and found Bill Gaines (long dead IRL) holding court. I tried to take a pic, but my tech failed, of course. Feb 4

I dreamt I was at David Hartwell’s house editing a manuscript while he worked outside in his garden. But he eventually came in and chatted. Feb 2

I have no idea what dream was supposed to be brought to mind by this middle-of-the-night note: NAT KING COLE SHOWS UP. All memories — gone! Feb 1 Read the rest of this entry »Collapse )

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scottedelman

Originally published at Scott Edelman. Please leave any comments there.

I got together with writer, editor, and Rosarium Publishing mastermind Bill Campbell yesterday at The Jerk Pit in College Park, Maryland for lunch—and to record the third episode of Eating the Fantastic.

BillCampbellEatingtheFantastic

Bill opened up about many things, including the genius of Samuel R. Delany, how Rosarium’s first book Mothership: Tales from Afrofuturism and Beyond gave birth to a new publishing company, the challenges of crowdfunding creative projects, why he was once blacklisted at a convention, and many other topics which I hope you’ll find as fascinating as I did.

There are three ways you can join us at the table—Read the rest of this entry »Collapse )

 
 
scottedelman

Originally published at Scott Edelman. Please leave any comments there.

Over on Facebook in a Marvel Comics alumni group, Ted Jalbert has posted a July 1976 Get Well card to Stan Lee which I’d completely forgotten I’d ever signed, dug out of the archives The Man had donated to the University of Wyoming.

It shows Stan on crutches wearing a cast, so I’m guessing he’d broken a leg—though perhaps that was only metaphorical—and was drawn by Paty Cockrum. Included are caricatures of Stan, John Verpoorten, Archie Goodwin, and many other Marvel staffers, plus the signatures of John Romita (both Sr. and Jr.), Walt Simonson, my wife Irene Vartanoff, Steve Edelson …

Steve Edelson? Wait—who’s Steve Edelson?

I’m Steve Edelson!

StanLeeGetWellCard

The reason I signed the card that way was because even though I was the one who organized the panels for the 1975 Mighty Marvel Con and edited the program book (so you’d think Stan would get my name right), when it came time there for him to introduce all us Marvel staffers from the stage, he pointed me out and called me … you guessed it … Steve Edelson.

So, of course, I’d tease him about that whenever I’d get the chance. When this card was put in front of me the following year, I apparently couldn’t resist.

Can you blame me?

 
 
scottedelman

Originally published at Scott Edelman. Please leave any comments there.

So I was searching for comic books which contained references to ukuleles—as one does—and came across Blue Ribbon Comics #2, which has a cover date of December 1939. A one-pager titled “Strange But True” featured the following fact.

BlueRibbonComics21939Ukulele

I’d have reproduced the whole of the page, but unfortunately, one of the accompanying strange facts was head-slappingly racist, so I don’t feel I should spread it around. (Though those who’d like to see how clueless folks were back in 1939 can go to the scan of that issue and click through to page 34.)

But what I found more fascinating about the issue was an editorial which advised that since “Dad may seem a bit worried at times recently” because of things like “war and poor markets and slow business,” the kids who were the presumed readers should leave it around where Dad could find the comic so he’d then read it and cheer up.

BlueRibbonComics21939

That’s right, in a message which likely would have gone to press in September or October of 1939—almost immediately after World War II began on September 1 of that year—kids were being told comics could help Dad get over it.

Somehow, I doubt the adventures of Rang-a-Tang the Wonder Dog and Buck Stacey, Range Detective were going to be enough to take Dad’s mind off what at the time surely seemed like the beginning of the end of world …

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scottedelman

Originally published at Scott Edelman. Please leave any comments there.

While digging out that 44-year-old Analog rejection letter I shared with you, I also ran across one of my own letters, sent just a few years later, which speaks to the ambitions of me at 19.

Because (as the letter reveals) I was trying to become George R. R. Martin’s publisher.

Back in 1975, when I was still living with my parents, flush with earnings from my new job at Marvel Comics, and feeling myself then to be more a part of comics than science fiction, I decided I’d start a publishing company which would do for comics what Advent Press was then doing for SF.

At the time, George had only published around a dozen short stories, had yet to come out with a novel, and I knew him best for his prose appearances in the pages of Star-Studded Comics, a fanzine out of Texas.

StarStuddedComics7

One such superhero adventure was “Powerman vs. the Blue Barrier,” which had appeared 10 years earlier.Read the rest of this entry »Collapse )

 
 
 
scottedelman

Originally published at Scott Edelman. Please leave any comments there.

Earlier today, the Horror Writers Association announced the final ballot for the 2015 Bram Stoker Awards, and I’m thrilled to see that my story “Becoming Invisible, Becoming Seen” is one of the final five in the category of Superior Achievement in Long Fiction.

BecomingInvisibleBecomingSeenSplashPage

Here are the five stories which survived the voting process and are now Stoker nominees.

Gary A. Braunbeck – Paper Cuts (Seize the Night) (Gallery Books)

Lisa Mannetti – The Box Jumper (Smart Rhino Publications)

Norman Partridge – Special Collections (The Library of the Dead) (Written Backwards)

Mercedes M. Yardley – Little Dead Red (Grimm Mistresses) (Ragnarok Publications)

Scott Edelman – Becoming Invisible, Becoming Seen (Dark Discoveries #30)

This marks the sixth time a story of mine has been voted onto a final Stoker Awards ballot. I previously appeared there with— Read the rest of this entry »Collapse )

 
 
scottedelman

Originally published at Scott Edelman. Please leave any comments there.

Early Friday morning, I headed into D.C. to record the second episode of my new podcast Eating the Fantastic, which seemed a perfect opportunity to check out Pineapple and Pearls, a cafe which opened its doors exactly one week earlier. It’s the latest restaurant from Rose’s Luxury chef Aaron Silverman, and will soon include a high-end, full-service restaurant of the same name—one which, unlike Rose’s, will allow reservations. Yay!

Because getting into D.C. for me involves taking one of a limited number of possible MARC trains out of Martinsburg at a completely mind-numbing hour, I arrived at Pineapple and Pearls exactly one minute before its 8:00 a.m. opening. But once that minute passed, and I could hear the sounds of reveille from the Marine barracks across the street, the door opened, and I learned what was for breakfast that morning.

PineappleandPearlsMenu

I’d already decided I was going to order the entire menu, for a number of reasons.

One—I’ve told you before how amazing Rose’s Luxury is, right? How could I not order it all?

Second—restaurants often dispense with some of their initial menu offerings once they gauge which are selling and which are not, and I wanted to check them all out before any were removed.

But don’t worry—though I did order the whole menu, I didn’t actually eat the whole menu! That, after all, is what friends and relatives are for. (In this instance, my son, whom I’d be meeting later that day.)Read the rest of this entry »Collapse )

 
 
scottedelman

Originally published at Scott Edelman. Please leave any comments there.

Yesterday, Bud Sparhawk and I met for lunch at Cafe Mozart in Washington D.C., where we recorded the second episode of Eating the Fantastic. (You can find information about the first episode, which featured Sarah Pinsker, here.) That’s Bud below, digging into the remains of his Linzer tartlette.

BudSparhawkEatingtheFantastic

I chatted with Bud—a three-time Nebula finalist and Analog magazine regular—about how Harlan Ellison’s Dangerous Visions anthology inspired him to become a writer, what it was like to write for three different Analog editors over four decades, the plotters vs. pantsers debate, and more.

There are three ways you can join us at the table:

1) You can subscribe at the iTunes store. (Note that though this specific episode isn’t yet visible there, it should be within the hour, and if you subscribe you’ll get it on your iPhone immediately whether it’s visible or not, as you can see I already have.)

BudSparhawkEpisodeiPhone

2) You can use the RSS feed of http://eatingthefantastic.libsyn.com/rss to download the episode to the device of your choice.

3) Or if you’d prefer, you can simply click below to listen to it here.Read the rest of this entry »Collapse )

 
 
scottedelman

Originally published at Scott Edelman. Please leave any comments there.

I received the latest PS Publishing Weekly Newsletter this morning, and in it, the full Table of Contents for Postscripts #36/37—which has been given the subtitle “The Dragons of the Night”—has been revealed.

Which means I now feel free to share the title of my story therein—one of my longest titles ever—as well as the names of the other writers and the titles of the other stories which will be surrounding mine.

And here they are!

Darkness, and Darkness by Robert Freeman Wexler
S.K. by James Cooper
A Reverie of Time by Allen Ashley
The Wedding Photographer by Robert Guffey
Machinists by Andrew Jury
The Second Runner by John Grant
Surfacing by Lisa L. Hannett
In Passing by Robert Reed
The Dragons of the Night by Darrell Schweitzer
Last Post by Robert Edric
Texas by James Cooper
Untanglement: The Leaving of the Quantum Cats by John Gribbin
Karen Coxswain, or Death as She is Truly Lived by Paul Di Filippo
Rewrites by Keith Brooke
Everything Finishes by John Grant
The Day My Heart Stood Still by Andrew Hook
Madam, I’m Adam by Gary Fry
In the Macabre Theatre of Nightshade Place by Cate Gardner
Happy Sands by Stephen Bacon
The Man Without the Blue Balloon and the Woman Who Had Smiles Only for Him by Scott Edelman
Blesséd by Bruce Golden
The Hutchison Boy by Darrell Schweitzer
Abundances Above by Brian Aldiss
The Beachcomber by Lavie Tidhar

What wonderful company I’m keeping!

Since it’s not self-evident from my title, “The Man Without the Blue Balloon and the Woman Who Had Smiles Only for Him” is a post-apocalyptic tale set an unspecified number of years in the future. Should you read it, I hope you enjoy it.

While I don’t yet see a link so you can order a copy of Postscripts #36/37, you can reach the full PS Publishing site here, where I’m sure purchasing information will be listed once it’s available.

If what I’ve been told by various editors and publishers comes to pass, I may have more stories published in 2016 than any single previous year. Fingers crossed!

 
 
scottedelman

Originally published at Scott Edelman. Please leave any comments there.

UPDATE: This workaround is no longer required, as Eating the Fantastic has been accepted and added to the iTunes store. You can check it out and subscribe here!

My food-centric science fiction podcast Eating the Fantastic launched yesterday, and though I provided an embed via which you could listen on your computer, I know many will instead want to download the episodes to their iPhones. Since it’ll likely take a few weeks before the show will be available there, I’m glad I was able to figure out a workaround for those who’d like to listen while away from their keyboards.

Actually …

I didn’t figure out anything.

Gil Roth of the Virtual Memories podcast explained it to me, and now I’m explaining it to you. Though I suspect many of you are far more advanced than I am, and could do without any of this, needing only the url of my RSS feed. But for anyone else out there who’s as clueless as I am …

First, find the Podcast app icon. You know, the one that looks like this—

PodcastAppIcon

Once you’ve clicked it and are in, click the plus sign in the upper left corner of your screen.Read the rest of this entry »Collapse )

 
 
 
scottedelman

Originally published at Scott Edelman. Please leave any comments there.

Are you ready to have lunch with me and writer/musician Sarah Pinsker? Because the first episode of Eating the Fantastic is now live!

ScottEdelmanSarahPinskerEatingtheFantastic

If you want more details about what the Eating the Fantastic podcast is all about, check out my earlier post. But if you’re a TL;DR type of podcast listener, then simply click play below and join Sarah and me for lunch at Baltimore’s Family Meal.

I hope to eventually get Eating the Fantastic into the iTunes store so you’ll be able to listen on the go, but until then, I think you should still find the episodes enjoyable enough to listen to here.

UPDATE: Eating the Fantastic has been accepted and added to the iTunes store. You can now check it out and subscribe here!

And if you’d like see what the two of us were putting in our mouths on Sunday rather than just being teased by our descriptions (and quite audible groans), check out the photos below.Read the rest of this entry »Collapse )

 
 
scottedelman

Originally published at Scott Edelman. Please leave any comments there.

As I announced Monday, I’ll shortly be launching a podcast titled Eating the Fantastic. Only two things stand in the way of posting the first episode, which I hope to do before the end of the week—deciding whether or not fair use allows me to include a seconds-long food-related audio snippet from a movie—and settling on the iTunes-appropriate image which best represents the show.

I’m working on unraveling the mysteries of fair use to better understand the former, but as for the latter—I previously shared two possibilities and asked for your opinion.

EatingtheFantasticBurger

EatingtheFantasticSandwich

But this morning, when I posted a photo to celebrate Pancake Day from my visit to Portland’s Stepping Stone Cafe, I realized I had far more choices than just those two.

If you have a moment, I’d appreciate it if you checked out the other images below, which I haven’t yet mocked up, and let me know if you think any of them would be a better fit.

Thanks!Read the rest of this entry »Collapse )

 
 
scottedelman

Originally published at Scott Edelman. Please leave any comments there.

Over on Twitter and Facebook, I’ve been teasing a SEKRIT PROJEKT which I would only unveil once I was 100% sure I was going to proceed.

And after having had lunch with Sarah Pinsker this afternoon, I have my answer—I am going to proceed!

ScottEdelmanSarahPinskerEatingtheFantastic

“What,” you may be thinking, “could lunch with Sarah Pinsker possibly have to do with a sekrit projekt?”Read the rest of this entry »Collapse )

 
 
scottedelman
04 February 2016 @ 09:28 am

Originally published at Scott Edelman. Please leave any comments there.

It’s been more than four years since I added to my set of rejection slips from dead magazines, which I began so struggling writers could feel a sense of schadenfreude.

That is:

Those magazines are gone … but we’re still here.

Earlier this week, while digging out my first rejection from Analog—which wasn’t a form, so it can’t be included as part of this collection—I came across another, so decided it was time to share one more.

OuiRejectionSlip

Oui was an adult magazine that also published fiction, and since many of my favorite science fiction writers published in those sorts of magazines at the beginnings of their careers—Robert Silverberg in Rogue, Harlan Ellison in Gent, and Avram Davidson in Swank, for example—I thought: Hey, why not me?

But it was not to be.

Oui started up in 1972, sent me this rejection some time during the late ’70s, and put out its last issue in 2007.

I’m not saying things would have ended differently for them had they bought that story of mine … but you never know.

 
 
scottedelman

Originally published at Scott Edelman. Please leave any comments there.

I made my first short story submission to Analog in 1972. Seven days later, editor Ben Bova rejected it.

Why am I telling you this?

Because 44 years and two editors later, I’ve finally sold a story to Analog!

And here’s how I got from there to here.

On June 22, 1972, when I was but a wee lad, I slid the manuscript of a story titled “No Pun Intended” into a manilla envelope and mailed it off. I no longer have any idea what that story was about, and I no longer have the ability to check. Long ago, I destroyed all evidence of my first three novels and 25 short stories. So all I know is … it included a pun, because I made mention of that fact in my cover letter, and because of, well, that title.

On June 29, I received this response.

AnalogRejectionLetter1972

I didn’t realize at the time, since I’d only been submitting my fiction for a year or so, how rare it was for someone as green as I was to receive anything but a form rejection slip. I also didn’t realize how many years of sending additional stories to Analog I’d have ahead of me before I’d receive a second personal response.

But even if I’d known, that wouldn’t have stopped me.Read the rest of this entry »Collapse )

 
 
 
scottedelman

Originally published at Scott Edelman. Please leave any comments there.

While merging photos I’d inherited from my mother after her passing with my own, I came across this one of mine, which was taken nearly nineteen years ago to the day, back when I was representing Sci-Fi Entertainment magazine at a Television Critics Association press tour.

That’s me hanging out at a party with Mystery Science Theater 3000 writers and stars Bridget Jones and Mike Nelson. We were at the Ritz-Carlton in Pasadena, probably on the night of January 19, 1997.

ScottEdelmanTCAsBridgetJonesMikeNelson

We’d all been brought there by the Sci-Fi Channel. Jones, Nelson, and a few more members of the MST3K cast were promoting their show’s move over from Comedy Central, while I was present because Sci-Fi Entertainment</a> was the official magazine of the Sci-Fi Channel. (Note that I was not yet an employee of theirs, but still worked at the time for Sovereign Media, the company behind Science Fiction Age, which was publishing the magazine under license.)

Earlier that day, we—along with Glen Morgan and James Wong of X-Files fame—appeared on-stage before a packed room of journalists answering questions about all things science fiction—including the then-upcoming 20th anniversary release of the Special Edition of Star Wars.

What I found surprising (once I dug out my complete transcript of the event, which of course I still owned, and which runs 24 pages) was that one of the questions directed toward me expressed skepticism that anyone would actually bother heading to a theater to see Star Wars!Read the rest of this entry »Collapse )

 
 
scottedelman
27 January 2016 @ 10:44 pm

Originally published at Scott Edelman. Please leave any comments there.

The 42″ snowfall here in Glengary, West Virginia was so remarkable that not only did I appear live on the BBC to let folks on the other side of pond know how bad things had gotten, but a photo of me lounging on a bench out back in the midst of the blizzard was featured within the first minute of Monday night’s CBS Evening News.

When I learned the image would be used, I warned friends not to blink if they wanted to catch me. But as it turned out, I was on screen long enough that blinking was permissible.

Check it out.

If you hung in for the entire broadcast, you’d have spotted my credit during the final moments—above the credit to the Smithsonian’s National Zoo for its panda footage.

ScottEdelmanCreditCBSNews

I know, I know … it was purely an alphabetical decision. But let me live the dream for a little longer that I’m more important than a panda, OK?

 
 
scottedelman
26 January 2016 @ 01:30 pm

Originally published at Scott Edelman. Please leave any comments there.

Artificial Intelligence pioneer Marvin Minsky passed away two days ago, which immediately brought back memories of the Science Forum in which he took part in the (gulp!) March 1993 issue of Science Fiction Age.

ScienceFictionAgeMarch1993Cover

Those memories proved not to be entirely accurate, as I learned when I thought of digging out the tapes from that session to see if any of the audio would be of a quality worth posting here. Read the rest of this entry »Collapse )

 
 
scottedelman

Originally published at Scott Edelman. Please leave any comments there.

I don’t know what other parts of the country are calling the blizzard which just finished walloping the East Coast, but the Washington Post decided its name was Snowzilla. And where I live, in Glengary, West Virginia, that name has certainly been earned, because as you can see by the final snow totals from the National Weather Service, we’re #1!

NationalWeatherServiceSnowzillaTotals

But even before it was all over, by 3:45 p.m. Saturday, the New York Times had already declared Glengary the winner.

GlengaryNewYorkTimes

That earlier mention of Glengary led to a several fun and fascinating side effects, beginning with a photo I’d posted online of me sitting out back on a bench being shared on Twitter by Darren Rovell, an ESPN reporter with more than a million followers. His tweet was liked and retweeted hundreds of times, eventually coming to the attention of both Good Morning America and the BBC.Read the rest of this entry »Collapse )

 
 
scottedelman
21 January 2016 @ 11:01 am

Originally published at Scott Edelman. Please leave any comments there.

I’ve been attending science fiction conventions for a relatively long time—my first Lunacon was in 1972, my first Worldcon in 1974—and I can’t remember David Hartwell ever not being there. That he will no longer be there seems wrong.

DavidHartwellNebulaAwardsWeekend2014

But though I won’t see him at conventions, he will live on in our memories, and in the many books he either edited or inspired.

Strangely, though it’s science fiction which has kept us bound together all these years, it was poetry that caused me to first reach out to him. I was a newbie teen back in those early days of con-going, so we moved in different circles, but I was also writing a great deal of poetry then, and David was the editor of the literary journal The Little Magazine, which published the likes of Thomas Disch, Samuel R. Delany, Joanna Russ, and Ursula K. Le Guin. Read the rest of this entry »Collapse )